I'm always looking for new ways to take my training to the next level. When I was recently looking for a new smart watch to replace my Apple Watch, I took to a few Peloton facebook groups to ask for recommendations. One of the watches that was recommended to me the most was Coros, which was a new brand I hadn't heard of before.
I recently had the chance to try out a Coros watch - the Coros Pace 2 - and in this post I'll share with you my experience with the watch, how it compares to Apple and Garmin, how it works with Peloton, and more!
Table of Contents
What is Coros?
Coros is a new smartwatch company that has been making waves in the wearable tech industry. They offer high end smartwatches for less expensive than competitors like Garmin and Apple.
The Coros watch is a great option for those looking for a smartwatch that does not break the bank. It offers many features that are found in more expensive watches, such as heart rate monitoring, GPS tracking, and notifications. The watches also have ANT+ which means they can sync to workout equipment like Peloton bike, tread, rower and other devices like Tempo and Tonal. The watch is also comfortable to wear and has a sleek design, and has an impressive battery life.
Coros Pace 2 Review
When I took the Coros Pace 2 out of the box I was immediately impressed with jsut how light it was. I had been wearing a Garmin Venu prior to this, and compared to that the Coros was so lightweight! When I put it on it almost felt like I didn't have anything on my wrist.
Setting up the Coros was really easy and similar to Garmin and their Garmin Connect center, Coros has an app to track all your workouts, as well as metrics like sleep, heart rate, steps, and more.
If you've used Garmin in the past, the Coros app is similar to Garmin Connect. This is where you can see details of your day, workouts, as well as customize your watch. I was really impressed with how many options were available to customize the watch! Not only did they have many different watch faces, but they also had the ability to change colors. I found the Coros app a lot easier to use to customize my watch than Garmin Connect.
Another important feature to me is the ability to create my workouts. The Coros app has the feature to be able to create workouts as well as schedule them so they'll pop up on your watch training calendar on the right day. This is great for me because I often forget what workouts I'm supposed to be doing on which days.
Battery life on the Coros Pace 2 is really impressive. I wore my watch for almost a week and a half straight - including 4 days of using GPS on 60 minute (and longer) workouts - before it needed to be charged. This is way more impressive than my old Apple Watch, which would require charging every day. I found the watch to have about the same battery life as my Garmin Venu overall.
Training with Coros
When it came time to workout, I used the Coros watch on a few different runs. I tested the watch out with a 6 mile recovery run on my first day, and it worked perfectly! I run pretty much the same routes so know mile markers the Coros watch was spot on.
On the watch itself, there were a few different displays I could toggle through while I was running. I personally like to have my heart rate showing on the main screen so I was able to find a setting that had that. The only downside to the screen is that it locks pretty fast, and unlocking is a little clunky - you have to hold down a side button, then can turn the little dial on the side to change screens. This is also similar to how you pause or finish a workout. I'm still used to using a Garmin where I can touch the screen during a workout to change what I'm looking at, or one click on the side dial to pause a workout so this does take some getting used to.
The next few days of wearing my watch the weather didn't cooperate so I took it inside on my Peloton tread. The watch synced right up and worked great! There was a discrepancy between the mileage on my tread and watch, but this is to be expected and something I always have happen with any GPS watch. I've found the more that I use watches - especially on GPS outside- the more the watches learn my stride and the more accurate the readings get. The nice thing is that after your run there's an option that pops up to calibrate so you can get the distance to be correct.
When the weather finally did get nice out and I was able to take my Coros back outside, I did find I had trouble switching back from Treadmill mode to Outdoor GPS. This totally could've been user error as I was in a bit of a rush, but I noticed about half way on my run that my Coros watch was slightly off from the mile markers I usually notice on my runs. I ended up running the 6 mile route and my watch ended up being only about .05 miles off so it wasn't a crazy amount, but something I did notice.
But overall the watch was really nice and pretty easy to use. I liked that at the end of the run Coros gave me a ton of insights into my run - even more than Garmin would provide - like training load, VO2 max and training effect. Once I wear the watch for more than 7 workouts outside it'll also give me insights into my fitness level with Coros EvoLab.
I was also able to easily sync with Coros with Strava so all my workouts automatically synced.
Coros and Peloton
The nice thing about Coros watches are that they use ANT+ technology so they can be paired easily with both the Peloton Bike and Treadmill. I tested out the Coros Pace 2 with my Peloton Tread and was impressed at how quickly it synced. Pairing the device was super easy and I was ready to run in under a minute.
One thing to note that while the Coros watch and the Peloton tread sync, it's more to be used as a heart rate monitor. Distance on both the Peloton bike and tread - like any other GPS watch - won't sync distance. When I did a few runs with the Coros Watch I noticed the distance on the watch and the tread was off by about .05-.1 mile each mile I ran, which is similar to what I'd get when I ran with my Garmin watch too. The nice thing is that at the end of the treadmill workout the Coros watch will pop up with a screen so you can calibrate and have it tie out to the distance your treadmill reads.
As you use the Coros watch more (especially on outdoor runs), the readings will get more in line with the treadmill reading and overtime the variance will be minimal.
For Peloton outdoor runs, the Coros watch acts separately from the workout so you'll track the workout on both the Peloton app and the watch. This is similar to almost all watches (besides Apple) so nothing too different here. I've found that Coros is more accurate than the distance the Peloton apps gives you for an outdoor run, so I actually prefer to use the watch (I find it comes down to how the Peloton app uses cell towers vs the watch using GPS signal).
Overall the Coros watch is a solid choice to use with the Peloton bike, tread and soon to be released rower.
Related Post: How to Sync a Garmin Watch with Peloton
Coros Watch Pros
Here are a few pros of the Coros Apex 2
- Easy to Use - the watch is exceptionally easy to use and really user friendly
- Long Battery Life - My watch lasts up to a week and a half on a single charge!
- Beautiful and Lightweight Design - the design of the watch is beautiful! I always look for smartwatches that look more like regular watches, and this executes perfectly. I also love how customizable the designs are on the watch face.
- Impressive Insights - The Coros Pace 2 provides a ton of insights into your training that usually only really expensive watches provide.
- Accurate GPS - I found the GPS to be more accurate than my Apple Watch, and on par with my Garmin.
- Compatible with Peloton and Other Accessories - I like how easy it is to connect with my Peloton bike and tread, as well as I was able to use my other accessories - like my Garmin chest heart rate monitor strap - flawlessly with it.
Coros Watch Cons
Here are are a few cons of the Coros Apex 2:
- No Watch Pay - Unlike Apple or Garmin, Coros doesn't have the ability to use the watch as contactless payment. If you're using this watch as only a workout watch this isn't a huge deal, but if you're using it as a lifestyle watch it might be something to think of.
- A Bit Clunky to End Workouts - This might just be me but I found the watch a little clunky when it came to ending workouts. I like to be able to just press a button once to end (and this is what I've been used to), but with the Coros Pace 2 you had to hold down a button to get the workout to end. I'm sure I would've gotten used to it after a while.
- No Shoe Tracker - I was really surprised to find out that while this watch has a lot of insights and features, it doesn't have a way to track mileage on a shoe! There are workarounds to this with using another app like Strava, but I like keeping things simple and all in the same app. Hopefully they release this feature in the future!
How to Sync Garmin Data to Coros
If you've decided to make the switch from Garmin to Coros, you'll probably want your data to load onto Coros. Getting your old Garmin data is a little clunky, but there is a way to download it off Garmin Connect.
On a computer, log into Garmin Connect. Then you can click on the activity you want and download the GPX file (click on the little gear in the top right corner when you're in the activity). Once you have the GPX file, you can upload it to Coros following these directions.
There is also a way to download bulk data from Garmin, but you need to submit a ticket for the data. Once Garmin receives the request it takes them about 2-3 days to send you a zip file of all your data that you can download. I'm still waiting to receive mine so haven't been able to do this completely first hand yet, but have read on Reddit that users have been successful with doing this.
Where to Buy
Overall, the Coros Pace 2 is a really impressive and solid watch at low price point. If you're in the market for a new GPS watch I highly recommend considering a Coros watch!